French Economy Minister, Bruno Le-Maire, will lead informal talks to produce a European candidate to head the International Monetary Fund (IMF), a European official at G7 talks near Paris said on Thursday.

The four European G7 members – Britain, France, Germany, and Italy – agreed that one European candidate should be put forward as a replacement for outgoing IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, the official said on condition of anonymity.

The IMF has traditionally been headed by a European, while sister organisation, the World Bank, has been headed by U.S. officials.

Ms Lagarde submitted her resignation as IMF chief this week after EU heads of government nominated her to head the European Central Bank.

“Le-Maire will consult informally with all EU member-states to find an agreed candidate with economic and financial experience as well as a political track record,’’ the source said.

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